Episode 3: Longing and Belonging in Love

In the third episode of the Shubbak Festival podcast love, lust and identity take centre stage.

DJ Nooriyah speaks to Selma Dabbagh editor of We Wrote in Symbols, a celebration of the erotic writing of women of Arab heritage who write about love and lust with artistry and skill. It features a wide-range of stories: a wedding night that takes an unexpected turn, a woman on the run meeting her match at Dubai Airport, and a carnal awakening occurring in a Palestinian refugee camp. DJ Nooriyah also chats to lisa luxx, a queer writer, performer, essayist and activist of British Syrian heritage whose one-woman verse play, Eating the Copper Apple, explores themes of love, identity, family and heritage.

We Wrote in Symbols: Love and Lust by Arab Women Writers, edited by Selma Dabbagh is published by Saqi Books. The book is widely available to buy from all book retailers, or to buy it direct from Saqi click here.

Selma Dabbagh

Selma Dabbagh is a British Palestinian writer whose debut novel Out of It (Bloomsbury) was a Guardian Book of the Year. Her fiction has been published in Granta and Wasafiri and translated into a number of languages including Arabic, Mandarin, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian and French. Dabbagh has also worked on film scripts and as a writer for feature films and radio plays. Her BBC R4 play The Brick was nominated for the Imison Award. She is the editor of We Wrote in Symbols.

Head and shoulders portrait of a woman
lisa luxx. Photo by Maria Klenner.

lisa luxx is a queer writer, performer, essayist and activist of British Syrian heritage. She writes for freedoms, for healing, to mobilise and to inquire. 

luxx is winner of the Out-Spoken Prize of Performance Poetry 2018. She was also nominated for the Arts Foundation Fellowship in Poetry. She regularly headlines literary events internationally. Her poetry has been broadcast across channels including Channel 4, BBC Radio 4, VICE TV and ITV. She was named one of the top 4 queer poets by Diva magazine.

luxx's poetry, essays and opinions are published internationally in newspapers, magazines and anthologies. She has lectured on the philosophy of language in mental health for TEDx, spoken on panels about refuge at the Tate Modern and given a talk on sexuality for The Psychedelic Society.